Category Archives: ICM508

Video and Sound and this Blog; Oh my!

Saturday classes yesterday started us all down the road to some very dangerous tools in the wrong hands: video and audio for the web, and those ‘wrong hands’ would be mine. I’ve always loved the idea of interactivity. I guess I went to sleep Rip Van Winkle-style just so that the technology available online could finally begin to keep up with the early-day predictions of a true multi-media experience.

One of the great things about the program at Quinnipiac is the sheer quality and amount of technical support and digital video and audio resources they make available to the student body for projects.  In yesterday’s class we were all shown models of the Marantz PMD-670 digital recorders and given some hands-on training for how to use them to record audio tracks. We also got an overview of the process of digital audio mixing and editing using Avid’s ProTools LE.

All just in time for our first project – producing 0:90 second voice-over instructional or informational audio presentations, which will then be served up as Podcasts. The technological knowledge itself is artistically empowering to me, and I’m starting to get tons of ideas swimming around in my head. I seriously need to start jotting them all down.

 One of the projects I would like to do to help me learn the audio and video principles of this class, just because I think the end result would be somewhat viral-video worthy among a certain set of friends, would be to record a whole bunch of men and women reciting a piece of ritual prose called the ‘Charge of the Goddess’. Then splice them in so that the whole thing gets ‘read’ by a set of voices which builds to borg-like intensity for the sheer numbers of simultaneous voices speaking. And along the way, cut to different men and women in the video version, showing all sorts of humans in different age groups and walks of life. That’s it. Nothing more than a recitation of the piece, artfully composed and posted to YouTube for sharing with whomever cares for that kind of video.

I know that the tone of this blog has been aimed more toward the professional world of interactive consultancy or a graduate student, but I have my own interests and desires for expression too. Part of the curse of artistic vision and inclination. This project is just an example of little things that present themselves to me, saying “Oh, and do this too.” Some of the ideas may be worthy of internet startups and entrepreneurial business plans, and others may just be items that I, as a creator and innovator, just feel need to be made.

Thinking About Marketing

I can always come up with ideas, but the place where I freeze comes from the execution thereof. I know that everyone wants to be the idea person, but sometimes there are folks who really do just fill up with ideas when certain possibilities are presented. I know from a decade plus of working in production-based positions of graphic design that no project left undone is worth more than a passing mention, so I’m not aiming for vaporware heaven. But it would be nice if there were a niche for folks like me who are long on ideas and planning and short on the patience to actually develop half of this crap.

Hrm. Well, I’ll just have to keep on doing and producing and plugging things in on this blog. Developing an intellectual portfolio is nice, and soon I’ll be able to add some examples of work beyond writing posts and papers.

Keep watching this space. Someday soon there will be odd bits of podcasts, audio, and video files on it. And with ICM512:Online Development asking us to plan out a website to build, there may be links to another whole site. (Time to review the WordPress interface to see just how this is all going to work out. Ahh, blessed logistics, the oft-times bane of creative professionals everywhere.) 

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ICM508 – Media Imaging and Sound Design

Video. Digital Video and motion graphics editing, as well as sound recording and design. All on a Saturday afternoon. Professor John Tanski teaching, and the rest of the class already starting to develop connections with each other. Or maybe it’s just that there are some familiar faces from my other classes, and we’re starting to recognize each other around campus.

I’m looking forward to this class as being my one ‘fun’ class of the semester. Not to say that the other courses aren’t enjoyable simply from the act of learning. But rather, this is one class where I’m not so concerned. I’ve got a pretty decent eye for composition already, I take certain artistic elements into account. I need to work to translate them again to the camera lens, but I think that I’m going to actually enjoy the work and production time that goes into this class.

In many ways, any one of the courses that I’m taking this semester could (and has!) unlocked tons of business ideas and hinted at new perspectives that really rearrange the old gray matter upstairs. I’ve said it before to my friends, this program hasn’t so much opened my mind’s doors but rather blasted them off the hinges… and it’s only the third week of classes. Undergraduate studies for me were a lot of coasting, a couple of epiphanies, and general academic programming. But not a connection like this. Before I was in school for the community and the social aspects of it. I needed to connect with peers and work out the interpersonal aspects of my social development more. Now… now it feels like the lid has been gently unscrewed and the data dump has begun. Not a mind scramble, but lots of little connections between past experiences and future applications.

And I have to admit, I love the way that every course interconnects. I’ll walk away from this semester having taken a broad survey of the history and current topics of interest in the field of Interactive Communications from my Intro course, ICM501. I’ll know how to code or at least speak to coders intelligently when talking about ActionScripting from ICM504. This class will allow me to shoot my own digital film and edit for content and music. And ICM512 seems to be aimed at teaching me about the concerns and considerations that need to be taken in order to correctly guide the development of any online project.

I can’t wait for next semester. If I stay in the Connecticut area, I might just take a couple of classes beyond graduation if they’re topics of interest and potential use.

The video will be fun, if only because as I get my homework done, I’ll be sharing with you, gentle readers, any of the work I do. After all, it’s not only a blog, it’s also a portfolio!